Tag Archives: blood sugar control

Mhealth, Mtechnologies, Mexplainations… MT1?

I love Dr. Bennett’s blog, whitty, quick reads on new mtechnology/mhealth minutia.

Although not specifically aimed at one health problem, his main focus is on obesity research via mobile or computer technologies. Although knowing virtually nothing about mhealth technologies, his blog has offered up a wealth of information allowing me to dive head first into the pool. He mainly offers insight into the challenges that many mobile health technology apps face, and how to avoid them. But, he also gives other insights that are helpful for academics, such as tips on writing a R01 grant. Finally, he gives good background and insight on popular press items relating to technology, such as the FB algorithm “Year in Review” that has received some, well, negative reviews?

The rise of mtechnologies has also expanded T1 care options… I have vivid memories of astonishment as one of my beloved T1 camp counselors, talking about what it was to have T1 in the 1960s; boiling glass syringes for shots, and using “pee sticks” as affordable glucose meters were yet to be invented. [A cool entire history lesson of T1/T2 can be found here. ] Yet, as of 2014, it is possible to send data from your test meter to your iphone, and the new tslim pump design includes a touch screen. Additionally, the possibility of a bionic pancreas controlled via iphone commands has been postulated as a future direction of T1 care. The advancement of technology for treatment options and rise of information has completely transformed the experience of having T1 in a matter of years… and for those who are young and technologically literate, it works to our benefit. But what about individuals who are not as technologically advanced? Are the new technologies user-friendly enough to be accessible for older generations? And with the shortening of patient-provider time during medical checkups, is there the opportunity for those who are not in the tech know-how to catch up? And does the advancement in technology in the U.S. and other Western countries increase the gap in care opportunity and availability in middle or low income countries?

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Summer Sugar Stresses

As a young adult who just graduated college, I am finding myself in a similar situation that many graduates find themselves: unsure of what I want to do with my life, but needing some cash to go do something for the time being- in my case, traveling to work for 9 months in rural Kenya. As the financial expenditure is my responsibility for this new adventure, this summer I am waitressing at 2 restaurants, and serving as a nanny for a family. Working 3 jobs has its benefits, as I am keeping busy and earning lots of money. But, a negative of working doubles and triples is that it has been hard controlling my blood sugars. Often during a waitressing shift, I am so busy I don’t have time to check my blood sugars. Nannying is easier, as I am able to slip away for a few seconds to do a quick prick of my finger. In the moments I have had a chance (and thought to) test, I have noticed that my blood sugars are running higher than I want them to be. As I am leaving for Kenya in less than 2 months, it is becoming increasingly important to get my sugars under control, and be as stable as possible upon my departure. So here’s my plan for the rest of my summer:

1.) Always take a blood sugar going to bed at night- 8 hours of good blood sugars a day can drastically help an A1C.

2.) Always start my morning with a blood sugar, to know how I’m starting my day.

3.) Although I might not be able to test during a shift, I can always test after the shift, before going to another job.

4.) Be more regimented about changing my pump site, every 4 days (my pump sites usually last between 4-7 days).

Things that have helped control my blood sugars that I will continue to do:

1.) Carry an extra pump site, so that if something goes wrong, I have access to a pump site change even if I don’t have time to go home.

2.) Carry insulin, and don’t leave it in the car to get hot.

3.) Carry a few extra needles, in case of pump malfunction.

4.) Hydrate with water during and between shifts.

5.) Consume balanced meals, with a focus on vegetables and proteins (I find that Greek yogurt in the morning with some fresh fruit to be an awesome way to not be hungry and to keep steady morning blood sugars).